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Rather than an IS coupe, however, we can confirm Lexus will directly target BMW’s upcoming 4 Series coupe line-up with its all-new RC Coupe range, which will be crowned by the flagship RC F – powered by a 339kW 5.0-litre V8 to take on the forthcoming BMW M4.

We cornered a Lexus insider just after these photos were taken and managed to extract the whole story. From the RC’s three powertrains to the flagship RC F’s beefy new V8 and eight-speed automatic transmission; from the RC F’s carbon-fibre body parts to its LFA supercar-inspired handling, we can now bring you the full scoop story of the ambitious new RC -- and this exclusive rendering from Japan’s Holiday Auto magazine.

Slated for release by October 2014, the new RC (which stands for Racing Coupe!) and the RC F kingpin are by far the most exciting models to ever emerge from Lexus. Sure, the limited-edition V10-powered $700,000 super-coupe ranked sky high in the excitement stakes, but you needed your own hedge fund to afford one.

The RC Coupe is based on the new IS sedan but draws on the essence of the LFA and adds a new engine line-up that is bound to cater to all tastes.

But the best part is the RC line-up will land in Lexus showrooms late next year for around a tenth of the LFA’s stratospheric asking price, with a starting price somewhere between that of the new IS sedan ($55,900) and BMW’s upcoming 4 Series ($73,200), while the fire-breathing RC F will be priced not far away from the outgoing IS F sedan ($126,300).

Draped in classy new exterior that borrows lines and surfaces from the LF-CC concept, the RC gets a brand-new body, a shorter wheelbase than that of the IS sedan and a new signature ‘spindle grille’ face to distinguish it from the latter.

Meanwhile, like the M4, the top-dog RC F flagship will employ carbon-fibre body parts including its bonnet, roof and boot lid. Oh, and that bonnet scoop has nothing to do with induction. Our insider tells us that this intake sucks air in and then channels it to the underbody where it improves the car’s downforce.

The RC F will also come with a speed-sensitive automatic rear spoiler adapted from the LFA, 15mm lower suspension settings (compared to the RC) and other aerodynamic tweaks learned from the LFA, which will allow the RC F to hit 300km/h.

The RC F sits on a newly developed chassis with a unique reinforced suspension sub-frame. It also incorporates Sachs monotube shock absorbers, special control-arm rear suspension, uprated coil springs and anti-roll bars, a specially tuned Lexus Dynamic Handling package and unique 19-inch BBS wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport PS2 rubber.

Co-developed with Brembo, the brake system will employ six-piston front callipers and a four-piston rear set-up, with slotted rotors all-round.

Now comes the tastiest part of the story, the engines. In addition to the V8 powering the RC F, the RC line-up will offer the choice of three engines; a new turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol-electric hybrid drivetrain and a 3.5-litre V6 with Torsen limited-slip differential.

The RC F’s 5.0-litre V8 generates 339kW at 6800rpm (up from 311kW in the IS F) and 544Nm of torque at 5200rpm -- up from 505Nm.

Our insider also reveals that the RC F will clear strict new Euro 6 emissions regulations. The V8 coupe achieves that goal by incorporating Lexus’ (and Toyota’s) first-ever cylinder deactivation technology, in which one bank of four cylinders will be shut down during low-load cruising.

Fitted with a race-tuned exhaust for a beefier note, the RC F will also incorporate steering wheel paddle shifters to operate the eight-speed, three-mode (normal, sport and snow) automatic transmission dubbed ‘Sports Direct Shift’, which is a development of the IS F’s gearbox.

Inside, the RC F will employ bucket seats co-developed with Recaro, as well as loads of carbon and polished aluminium trim.

Lexus parent company Toyota spent hundreds of millions of dollars establishing a specialised LFA factory at Motomachi in Toyota City, and hired 175 hand-picked engineers and designers to build the specialist supercar with its carbon-fibre and aluminium body.

That compliment of staff might have been temporarily relocated since the last LFA was assembled on December 14, but they’ll be back again early next year to help get the RC F online. This car also benefits from knowhow gained from racing at the Nurburgring with the race-spec Lexus IS F CCS-R, which undercuts the production IS F’s curb weight by some 300kg.

And we can look forward to seeing race versions of the RC F on racetracks from Suzuka to Nurburgring and Laguna Seca as new internationally standardised DTM-class race regulations come into play in Japan, Europe and the US by 2017.

Expect the cracking RC F to introduce the all-new RC Coupe family when it makes its world debut at the Detroit motor show in January, with the three other RC variants to be revealed at the New York motor show next April.

Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has been talking about a Lexus sports car for the masses for a couple of years now. With a base price of around $65,000, you could say it’s finally here… nearly.

Source: Carsales 10/08/2013 - Peter Lyon

Link: http://www.carsales.com.au/news/2013/sports/lexus/lexus-rc-f-coupe-to-pack-339kw-v8-38109

Glad Lexus did not follow the turbo 6 route that the euro brands are assumed to follow.

What do you think?

Edited by DO IT
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I saw pictures of the car last night and must say it looks HOT! I am curious though that when the RCF is released then will they still release a ISF as it will almost be identical. I will miss the 4 door high performance though.

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